The Forbidden City (Chinese: 紫禁城; pinyin: Zǐjìnchéng) is a palace complex in Dongcheng District, Beijing, China, at the center of the Imperial City of Beijing. It is surrounded by numerous opulent imperial gardens and temples including the 54-acre Zhongshan Park, the sacrificial Imperial Ancestral Temple, the 171-acre Beihai Park and the 57-acre Jingshan Park.
The Forbidden City was constructed from 1406 to 1420, and was the former Chinese imperial palace and winter residence of the Emperor of China from the Ming dynasty (since the Yongle Emperor) to the end of the Qing dynasty, between 1420 and 1924. The Forbidden City served as the home of Chinese emperors and their households and was the ceremonial and political center of the Chinese government for almost 500 years. Since 1925, the Forbidden City has been under the charge of the Palace Museum, whose extensive collection of artwork and artifacts were built upon the imperial collections of the Ming and Qing dynasties. The Forbidden City was declared a World Heritage Site in 1987.
The complex consists of 980 buildings, encompassing 8,886 rooms and covering 720,000 square metres (7,800,000 sq ft). The palace exemplifies the opulence of the residences of the Chinese emperor and the traditional Chinese palatial architecture, and has influenced cultural and architectural developments in East Asia and elsewhere. It is listed by UNESCO as the largest collection of preserved ancient wooden structures in the world. Since 2012, the Forbidden City has seen an average of 14 million visitors annually, and received more than 19 million visitors in 2019. The Forbidden City’s market value has been estimated at $70 billion, making it both the world’s most valuable palace and the most valuable piece of real estate anywhere in the world.
Some sources describe it as the largest palace in the world still in existence, however other Chinese imperial residences far exceed it in size, namely the 6.1 km2 (2.4 sq mi) Zhongnanhai which lies just west of the Forbidden City, the 2.9 km2 (1.1 sq mi) Summer Palace in Haidian District, Beijing, and the 5.6 km2 (2.2 sq mi) Chengde Mountain Resort in Chengde, Hebei Province.
The common English name “Forbidden City” is a translation of the Chinese name Zijin Cheng (Chinese: 紫禁城; pinyin: Zǐjìnchéng; lit. ‘Purple Forbidden City’). The name Zijin Cheng first formally appeared in 1576. Another English name of similar origin is “Forbidden Palace”.
The name “Zijin Cheng” is a name with significance on many levels. Zi, or “Purple”, refers to the North Star, which in ancient China was called the Ziwei Star, and in traditional Chinese astrology was the heavenly abode of the Celestial Emperor. The surrounding celestial region, the Ziwei Enclosure (Chinese: 紫微垣; pinyin: Zǐwēiyuán), was the realm of the Celestial Emperor and his family. The Forbidden City, as the residence of the terrestrial emperor, was its earthly counterpart. Jin, or “Forbidden”, referred to the fact that no one could enter or leave the palace without the emperor’s permission. Cheng means a city. Today, the site is most commonly known in Chinese as Gùgōng (故宫), which means the “Former Palace”. The museum which is based in these buildings is known as the “Palace Museum” (Chinese: 故宫博物院; pinyin: Gùgōng Bówùyùan).
Museum-quality poster made on thick and durable matte paper. Add a wonderful accent to your room and office with these posters that are sure to brighten any environment.
• Paper thickness: 0.26 mm (10.3 mil)
• Paper weight: 189 g/m² (5.57 oz/y²)
• Opacity: 94%
• ISO brightness: 104%
• Giclée printing quality
• 21 × 30 cm posters are size A4
• Blank product sourced from Japan